95th ESA Annual Meeting (August 1 -- 6, 2010)

SS 21 - CANCELLED - Given That the Climate Is Changing, How Do We Know We're Doing the Right Research?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010: 8:00 PM-10:00 PM
317-318, David L Lawrence Convention Center
Mark Neff
Lori A. Hidinger
Recent ESA policy documents have called for ecology to be a proactive and forward looking science in order to best address coming environmental challenges. A changing climate presents challenges to ecology as a discipline and to individual scientists as they struggle to meet knowledge needs while advancing their own careers. Ecology as a discipline comprises scientists doing research on diverse scales, using varied methods, and with a variety of underlying goals and intentions. Some ecologists seek to contribute to problem solving by building and refining theory, whereas others aim to inform more immediate natural resource management questions. Balancing these approaches is difficult enough; a changing climate further complicates this task. In the context of a dynamic climate, how can funders, universities, and individual scientists advance the science of ecology while meeting unknown knowledge needs? How can we best organize the field to ensure that ecology produces knowledge appropriate for the challenges associated with a changing climate? How do we know if we are doing the right research? This special session brings together Penny Firth, Deputy Division Director of Environmental Biology at the NSF, Ann Bartuska, Deputy Chief for Research and Development at the Forest Service, and a third speaker (TBD) to discuss these questions. Following brief – and provocative – statements from each, there will be a discussion amongst the panelists and with the audience.
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